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5 easy ways to get more fruit and vegetables into your diet

/ 09:20 PM June 25, 2018

Image: Dean Mitchell/Istock.com via AFP Relaxnews

If you’re looking to give your health a boost, upping the amount of fruit and vegetables you eat is one of the best ways to do it. High in fiber, low in calories, and packed full of vitamins and minerals, fruit and vegetables bring a variety of health benefits.

However, if you’re struggling to reach the recommended daily allowance, then here are five easy ways to add more fruits and veggies into your diet.

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Be prepared

If you pre-prepare your fruit and veggies you might be more inclined to snack on them during the day. Wash and chop fruit, peel and slice carrots, cucumbers, celery and other easy-to-snack-on vegetables, and then pop them in sealable containers in the fridge to keep them fresh. That way, you won’t be put off by preparation time and reach for something like a chocolate bar or bag of chips. You can also prepare a big bowl of salad at the beginning of the week to have as a side dish with dinner each day.

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Add just one portion to each meal

This could be a banana with breakfast, a handful of berries to your yogurt, or an extra portion of vegetables with dinner. Start with just one meal and that’s an extra portion of fruit or vegetables each day; add them to every meal and you’ve nearly achieved your five-a-day.

Choose fruit instead of dessert

If you opt for sweet fruit instead of a dessert you’ll not only squeeze in an some extra nutrients, but you’ll also cut down on your daily calorie, fat and sugar intake. Summer berries, pineapple and mango are all good options to help satisfy a sweet craving.

It doesn’t have to be fresh

Fresh fruit and vegetables are great, but in today’s fast-paced world, sometimes you need to choose a more convenient option. If you don’t have time for washing and prepping fresh produce, which will also be wasted if you don’t have time to eat it, then frozen or canned fruit and vegetables are a good alternative; they last longer and give you a healthy option in the freezer or cupboard. Just avoid canned fruit in sugary syrups and avoid shop-bought juices which can also be high in sugar and low in nutrients.

Try new things

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If you’re struggling to eat enough fruit and vegetables because you don’t like them or you’re bored of the options, then try some new ones. Pick something you haven’t eaten before, research how to cook it and a new recipe, and you might find you have discovered a new favorite fruit or vegetable and even a new dish. Or, make your regular shopping list more exciting by buying some new herbs and spices to add to your veggies, and find new ways to cook them. JB

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